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Duterte announces: "We are being sabotaged" - Let's brace ourselves for massive demonstrations ~SHARE

I had a creeping suspicion that the deaths of Kian, Arnaiz, and Kulot were part of a conspiracy to bring down the government of Presiden...

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Junking of impeach raps against Bautista designed to protect electoral fraud?


IT’S happened again. The House of Representatives’ committee on justice has dumped the impeachment complaint against Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Andres Bautista, filed by former representative Jacinto Paras and lawyer Ferdinand Topacio, for being “insufficient in form”. Last week the same committee also junked the impeachment complaint of the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) against Chief Justice Ma. Lourdes Sereno for the same reason.

In my previous column, I discussed how an impeachment complaint is tested in terms of sufficiency in form.

The requirement of form is met if the written complaint contains the principal necessary matters, the proper technical terms and phrases and whatever else is necessary to make it formally correct. It should be arranged in proper and methodical order, and capable of being adapted as the House’s version of the Articles of Impeachment.

I likewise mentioned that the complaint’s “verification” is not anchored on the “personal knowledge” phrase alone but equally on the “authentic records” phrase. Conformably, I wrote that there should be a statement in the verification to this effect—“I have read and understood its contents, which are true and correct based on my own personal knowledge or on authentic records”.

Early this week Paras and Topacio amended their complaint and filed a substitute verification that “the allegations therein are true of our own knowledge or based on authentic records”. However, this came too late. Some committee members were of the opinion that a substitute verification was an admission that the original verification was fatally defective.

What is the effect of this? Bautista is effectively shielded from any impeachment for a period of one year, as mandated by the Constitution. Its Article XI, Section 3 (5) states that, “No impeachment proceedings shall be initiated against the same official more than once within a period of one year.”

What a waste. Those who hurry in haste to file the first impeachment complaint against any public official should make sure that their complaint will pass the sufficiency test. Otherwise, they are doing the public a disservice – by allowing an impeachable officer to go scot-free for another year.

Rumors have it that the junking of the impeachment complaint against Bautista was designed to conceal the alleged electoral fraud that happened in 2016. Apparently, Bautista will name names during his impeachment trial. Of course, those who allegedly paid for their elective positions would not want this to happen.

Proclamation 319

President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday signed Proclamation 319 declaring September 21 as a National Day of Protest. Memorandum Circular No. 26 was likewise issued suspending work in government offices and classes in public schools in observance of the National Day of Protest.

Are we Filipinos not yet tired of protesting? We protest everything but to naught.

We protest about the high prices of fuel. We protest about the escalating electricity charges but we tolerate the excesses of the Energy Regulatory Commission. We protest the daily heavy vehicular traffic. Yet, we allow the traffic managers and regulators to implement and adopt traffic schemes that are devoid of sense and sensibilities.

We complain about the lack of motor vehicle plates and drivers’ license cards. However, we don’t give a damn as to how these projects are awarded to non-complying contractors. We criticize the conduct of our automated elections at the top of our voices. Nonetheless, nobody listens to these lamentations.

We oppose corruption in the judiciary and the prosecutorial agencies of the government. Still, we bow to these magistrates and prosecutors as if they are gods.

Why not take a breather? Instead of protesting, let us show some thanks. Thanksgiving is a grateful acknowledgment of the blessings and favors that one had received the preceding year, especially to God.
Do you know that at present we do not have a day set apart to celebrate thanksgiving? We shunned celebrating thanksgiving since 1986 – courtesy of then President Corazon Aquino.

From 1901 to 1935, the Philippines, being an American colony, celebrated thanksgiving every fourth Thursday of November, to coincide with America’s Thanksgiving Day. During the Commonwealth period, President Manuel Quezon continued to declare Thanksgiving Day as a national holiday. After World War 2, succeeding Presidents from Sergio Osmeña Sr. to Ferdinand Marcos continued the practice of celebrating Thanksgiving Day as a special public holiday.

After the proclamation of Martial Law in 1972, Marcos moved Thanksgiving Day to September 21 from the customary fourth Thursday of November. Cory Aquino, upon assumption of power in 1986 put a stop to the thanksgiving celebration.

This is the present state that we are in. We whine and protest instead of giving thanks for all our blessings. It is believed that the universe will keep hitting you with the same lessons in cycle until you learn. But, Filipinos never learn—we just keep on protesting.

John Wooden, the legendary American basketball coach, said: “Be true to yourself, help others, make each day your masterpiece, make friendship a fine art, drink deeply from good books, especially the Bible, build a shelter against a rainy day, give thanks for your blessings and pray for guidance every day.”

People can positively transform their lives if they shift from protesting to giving thanks for their blessings. It’s about time we celebrate Thanksgiving Day again.



British Citizen Pens A Powerful Open Letter to PRRD That Will Make You Shed Tears Od Pride

It's quite refreshing to see foreign people who appreciate the Philippines, the beauty it brings and the characteristics the inhabitants portray.

In a time where everyone, especially fellow Filipinos are bringing our country down just because of their personal interest, it makes everyone very happy to read letters of appreciation quite like this.

Malcolm Conlan, a British Citizen with a Filipino heart who has been traveling back and forth to his home and here for over 25 years already, took it to Facebook to express his gratitude to President Rodrigo Duterte.

According to him, having seen many improvements gradually taking place in the country, he said that he speaks for many people around the world when he says that Philippines, to them is one of the greatest countries in the world.

This, he said is due to the incredible, friendly, caring, loving and hospitable people. He noted that whenever he travels around the world, he is always met with a friendly smile an a positive attitude. And he claims that since President Duterte took the seat, he felt an increased sense of pride in the Philippines and renewed hope for a better Philippines, free of corruption, drugs, and criminality.

"Whenever you travel around the world, you will always be met with a friendly smile, positive attitude and since you have taken office, an increased sense of pride in the Philippines and renewed hope for a better Philippines, free of corruption, drugs and criminality under your world class leadership."

He also added that PRRD is a shining example to world leaders on how to engage their electorate.

"With a popularity rating of over 80%, you are a shining example to world leaders on how to engage with your electorate, bring about real change and increase confidence in the country and people."

Doesn't this make you proud? Read his whole post here.

An Open Letter to the President of the Republic of the Philippines, Rodrigo Roa Duterte.

Dear Sir,

I am writing to you to pass on my grateful thanks from the many foreigners around the globe, along with many millions of Filipinos who greatly admire you for your strength of leadership, dedication, humbleness and desire to see a better Philippines for us all.

I have been traveling to the Philippines now for over 25 years and have been 'back home' over 50 times.

Over the years, I have seen many improvements gradually taking place and have fallen in love with the country and people. Right now the Philippines is massively moving forward in terms of infrastructure, through the Build Build Build program, which I had the absolute honor of attending the program launch last April in Manila.

I know many around the world are looking forward to promising improvements in roads, railways and bridges, even a subway system to make commuting easier and lessen Manila's traffic problems, as well as leading to further increases in tourism to the country.

I know I speak for many people around the gone who visit the country, when I say that the Philippines to us, is one of the greatest countries in the world.

This is also due to the incredible, friendly, caring, loving and hospitable people.

Whenever you travel around the world, ou will always be met with a friendly smile, positive attitude and since you have taken office, a increased sense of pride in the Philippines and renewed hope for a better Philippines, free of corruption, drugs and criminality under your world class leadership.

With a popularity rating of over 80%, you are a shining example to world leaders on how to engage with your electorate, bring about real change and increase confidence in the country and people.

Maraming Salamat po sir, I always pray for your continued strength, dedication and foresight, your leadership has helped millions of Filipinos both in the Philippines and around the world.

Humbly yours,

Malcolm Conlan
British Citizen with a Filipino heart
London, UK 


Saturday, September 23, 2017

UK political commentator reveals why Liberals are afraid of Duterte victory against drug war and terrorism

Adam Garrie, a UK political commentator and the Managing Editor at 'The Duran', an international commentary and news site, revealed five reasons why the Liberals are frightened of Duterte beating drugs and the terrorists in the country.

"Liberals will never side with Rodrigo Duterte, even if he crushes ISIS in Philippines. Even as he fights ISIS, the western liberal elite and their mainstream media allies have nothing good to say about the Philippine President."

This was how Adam Garrie stated on his site following the decision of President Duterte to declare Martial Law in the island of Mindanao to eradicate the ISIS linked terrorist group, Maute.

Garrie cited 5 reasons as to what frightens the Liberals about a Duterte victory:

1. ISIS is financed by drugs

Garrie explained that ISIS are known to profit from the international narcotics trade. Duterte's first war was the war on drugs, but what many do not realize is that it is related to the wider war on ISIS.

According to Garrie, drugs and drug users are in this sense complicit in aiding terrorism. Liberals who make every excuse in the world for drug use are doing their best to ignore this. If Duterte wins the double-headed war on ISIS and the drugs that fund ISIS, liberals will have a great deal to answer for.

2. It vindicates President Basher al-Assad's fight against terrorism

"The liberal mainstream media continually demonize President Bashar al-Assad who once stood virtually alone fighting ISIS and other ISIS clones," Garrie stated.

Garrie added that by contrast, Duterte is a populist who openly promotes a heavy handed approach to social disorder and law enforcement. If Duterte who in many ways is far more of a hardliner than Assad wins the war on terrorism, it will show liberals that the soft approach to government is insufficient when fighting terrorism.

3. A Duterte victory will demonstrate that Syria is surrounded by enemy states

"Philippines is a series of islands making supplying ISIS considerably more difficult than supplying terrorists in Syria over land. This is especially true of Turkey from where many supplies including western arms reach the hands of terrorists," he said.

A naval blockade of the areas in Philippines where ISIS is in charge could help to stop the inflow of materials to the terrorists.

"This holds the potential to make a Philippine victory over ISIS easier than that of Syria which has found it difficult to police its borders with unfriendly states," Garrie added.

4. It shows that yet again Russia and China are on the correct side of history

The successful meetings between Rodrigo Duterte and Vladimir Putin as well as China's leader will likely prove the Liberals that they are wrong.

"ISIS and their puppet masters in the Gulf and beyond wanted to expose Duterte's relationship with Russia as meaningless," Garrie cited.

5. It unmasks the poor priorities of the liberal mainstream media and political elite

"They were literally more concerned with Duterte's domestic policies which they have no right to change, than they were about helping a democratic nation fight ISIS  terrorism," Garrie ended.


Guys, impressed talaga ako kay DFA Sec. Cayetano Subrang Galing. panoorin



The people are not yet through with Andy Bautista


THE elected representatives of the people, or at least the 26 members of the justice committee of the House of Representatives, including majority leader Rudy Fariñas and its chair, Rep. Rey Umali, have decided to dismiss the impeachment complaint filed against Commission on Elections (Comelec) chairman Andy Bautista on the grounds that it was insufficient in form.

The fatal flaw ranged from a wrong verification, to the claim that it appeared to have been submitted to the House and not to the justice committee, to the allegation that those who filed it have no personal knowledge of what they alleged.

The junking of the petition was simply based on a technicality, and not on the substance of the allegations.

And yet we already heard Andy Bautista proclaiming that the dismissal is the beginning of his exoneration.

It behooves one to ask by what figment of imagination Bautista could claim that a dismissal based on alleged deficiency in form can lead to a celebration of his innocence of the charges.

Bautista should be reminded that while he may have the presumption of innocence on his side, this is simply because the people’s representatives have denied the complainants the chance to prove his guilt.

But we, the people, are not yet done with him.

The people have an enormous interest in Andy Bautista’s case, and it has nothing to do with his marital problems but with the allegations made about his possible wealth which he did not declare in his statement of assets, liabilities and net worth (SALN). Also of interest is his alleged taking of commissions from a law firm in relation to a legal service provided to Smartmatic, which was the provider for the automated election system,

At the very heart of these allegations is the fact that they could cast a cloud of doubt over the integrity of our election system, one that Andy Bautista presides over.

In fact, if it is true that the electoral process was compromised by his acts, then such would have been a blatant attack on our democratic institutions, and would have violated the political rights of the people.

Article 21 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) explicitly states that “the will of the people shall be the basis of the authority of government; this will shall be expressed in periodic and genuine elections which shall be by universal and equal suffrage and shall be held by secret ballot or by equivalent free voting procedures.” This is reiterated in letter b or Article 25 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).

Hence, Andy Bautista’s case is of utmost importance to our democracy, for its integrity hangs in the balance based on his guilt or innocence. Such would have been clearly established had the House justice committee allowed substance to take precedence over mere technicality.

While one can be skeptical of the remaining remedy in the hands of the House, where one third of the entire membership can decide to reverse the decision of the justice committee, which frankly is a remote possibility, everything is not yet lost for the people.

Even if Andy Bautista is an impeachable official, and the dismissal of the impeachment complaint filed against him effectively inoculates him with another year of immunity, there is nothing in the Constitution and the laws that prevent the Ombudsman or the Department of Justice through the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) from investigating his actions.

Also, there is nothing that bars the Senate, and even the House, from investigating matters pertaining to the issues raised in the impeachment complaint, either in their oversight functions or in aid of legislation.

We also have to take comfort in the fact that many of the allegations against Andy Bautista are in the nature of a conspiracy. He allegedly has received commissions from a private law firm on an election-related matter. He has admitted that the bank accounts that he failed to declare in his SALN are all joint accounts for which his co-depositors are not impeachable officials, and therefore do not have the same kind of immunity that he has. As such, parties who are mentioned can be investigated, and if found with probable cause then appropriate cases can be filed. Even as Andy Bautista is immune from suit, his acts will be scrutinized through the acts of others. The nature of conspiracies is that finding a co-conspirator guilty can imply the guilt of the other. Putting those others named on trial will technically, and indirectly, implicate Andy Bautista.

Hence, even if he remains in his post as Comelec chair for the next 12 months, thanks to the House justice committee, his political capital and his legitimacy will be severely eroded in the event that anomalies involving him will be found in legislative inquiries, or found to have probable cause in investigations by the NBI or the Ombudsman.

The pressure will be intense on Andy Bautista. And after one year if he survives and refuses to step down, then a more robust impeachment complaint can be filed, fortified by findings from the investigations that can be initiated against him and others with whom he had joint deposits, or had questionable transactions with.

By then, the people would have the prudence to follow the correct format. And there would be no more need to establish personal knowledge since allegations will now be based on the outcomes of the official investigations. Hence, the House justice committee will no longer have any reason to dismiss such impeachment complaint on the basis of a mere technicality.

Andy Bautista said that the recent dismissal of the impeachment complaint will enable him to live a normal life, with business as usual.

The people will have to make sure that he will not have that pleasure.